A series of dynamometer tests were conducted by the Wheel Defect Prevention Research Consortium (WDPRC) to quantify the amount of expected variation in brake shoe coefficient of friction (COF) and resulting wheel temperature throughout the life of an individual brake shoe. Variations in brake shoe COF within an individual railcar are one potential source of elevated wheel temperatures and thermal mechanical shelling (TMS) damage to the wheels. High friction composition and tread conditioning brake shoes were installed in the “as manufactured” condition with no wear-in or machining at the beginning of the test matrix which consisted of seventeen stop tests and twelve grade tests. For each brake shoe tested, the average COF and maximum wheel temperature were recorded during eleven identical light grade tests interspersed throughout the test matrix.

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